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The Interaction of Shocks with Dispersive Waves II. Incompressible-Integrable Limit

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This is the second in a two-part series of articles in which we analyze a system similar in structure to the well-known Zakharov equations from weak plasma turbulence theory, but with a nonlinear conservation equation allowing finite time shock formation. In this article we analyze the incompressible limit in which the shock speed is large compared to the underlying group velocity of the dispersive wave (a situation typically encountered in applications). After presenting some exact solutions of the full system, a multiscale perturbation method is used to resolve several basic wave interactions. The analysis breaks down into two categories: the nonlinear limit and the linear limit, corresponding to the form of the equations when the group velocity to shock speed ratio, denoted by epsilon, is zero. The former case is an integrable limit in which the model reduces to the cubic nonlinear Schrodinger equation governing the dispersive wave envelope. We focus on the interaction of a "fast" shock wave and a single hump soliton. In the latter case, the epsilon=0 problem reduces to the linear Schrodinger equation, and the focus is on a fast shock interacting with a dispersive wave whose amplitude is cusped and exponentially decaying. To motivate the time scales and structure of the shock-dispersive wave interactions at lowest orders, we first analyze a simpler system of ordinary differential equations structurally similar to the original system. Then we return to the fully coupled partial differential equations and develop a multiscale asymptotic method to derive the effective leading-order shock equations and the leading-order modulation equations governing the phase and amplitude of the dispersive wave envelope. The leading-order interaction equations admit a fairly complete analysis based on characteristic methods. Conditions are derived in which: (a) the shock passes through the soliton, (b) the shock is completely blocked by the soliton, or (c) the shock reverses direction. In the linear limit, a phenomenon is described in which the dispersive wave induces the formation of a second, transient shock front in the rapidly moving hyperbolic wave. In all cases, we can characterize the long-time dynamics of the shock. The influence of the shock on the dispersive wave is manifested, to leading order, in the generalized frequency of the dispersive wave: the fast-time part of the frequency is the shock wave itself. Hence, the frequency undergoes a sudden jump across the shock layer.In the last section, a sequence of numerical experiments depicting some of the interesting interactions predicted by the analysis is performed on the leading-order shock equations.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: University of Illinois 2: University of Southern California

Publication date: May 1, 1998

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